Robert Morris goaltender Dalton Izyk picked up his first NCAA victory last Sunday in the Colonials 3-1 win over Army in the first round of the Atlantic Hockey Association tournament.
For an encore, the freshman from Oswego, N.Y., earned his first collegiate shutout as RMU beat the University of Connecticut 3-0 in Game 1 of their best-of-three AHA quarterfinal series Friday night.
Izyk turned away 33 shots at the Freitas Ice Forum in Storrs, Conn. He is just the fourth RMU freshman netminder to record a shutout, and the first to do so in postseason action. The Colonials can close out the series and advance to the AHA semifinals with a win Saturday night.
After a scoreless first period, RMU junior left wing Jeff Jones got the rebound on senior defenseman Andrew Blazek’s shot and jammed the puck past Huskies freshman goaltender Robby Nichols with only 46 seconds left in the second period. It was Jones’ ninth goal of the season.
Wydo collected the puck along the left boards and skated toward the middle of the ice. He then lofted a wrister on net from the circle that went over Nichols’ left shoulder.
Now with 60 career goals, Wydo is only four scores away from tying the program record. The Michigan native has 99 points in a Colonials uniform.
RMU closed it out with a late goal at the 18:18 mark, as sophomore right wing Brandon Denham chipped one top-shelf at the right post off a feed from sophomore center Greg Gibson for his 11th of the season.
There were only five penalties called during the game by the officials. The breakdown on the scoresheet was one against UConn and four against RMU. The Colonials went a perfect 4 for 4 on the penalty kill.
Nichols went 31 of 34 between the pipes for the Huskies.
This is the third time that the Colonials have made it to the quarterfinals since joining the AHA prior to the 2010-11 season, and their first quarterfinal victory. The two previous times that RMU had advanced past the first round of playoff play, the Colonials were swept in two games.
The puck will drop for Game 2 at 7:05 p.m. You can catch all the action with Steve Kolbe and Mike Prisuta on ESPN 970 AM or online at americaonesports.com.